File photo of Cuban rafters.

HAVANA TIMES — Sixteen Cuban rafters were close to their goal of touching US soil when heavy rains kept them from reaching one of the Florida Keys.

In a perilous situation, the US Coast Guard rescued the rafters and the seven most dehydrated were taken on land to a hospital on Morada Island and are now in stable condition, Coast Guard spokesperson Mark Barney told Café Fuerte on Thursday.

Barney said the other nine rafters were being held at sea to determine their migration status, with the most likely scenario being their deportation to Cuba. He said the seven hospitalized could stay in the US and seek refugee status under the Cuban Adjustment Act.

While more Cubans have received visas to travel to the USA than in the past, a large percentage are still denied the possibility of legal travel, opting for risking their lives on rickety vessels. The prize comes when touching US soil where they can take advantage of the Adjustment Act, which puts them on a fast track to permanent residence.

Another group of 17 Cubans were detained Wednesday by Honduran authorities as they were trying to head by land to the United States.


2 thoughts on “Dehydrated Cuban Rafters, the Lucky Ones

  • The dewey eyed liberals in the faculty lounges of US colleges want the unfettered ability to have a vacation in the regime that these 33 people are trying to escape. Go figure.
    Frank Duggan

  • 33 courageous people risking their lives by trying to reach freedom and democracy. Who dare criticise them for their endeavors in seeking to escape the oppressive Castro family regime? These people do not want to abandon their homes, their families, their communities and their culture but rather reach the conclusion that having only one life they would prefer to risk it upon the high seas rather than live that only life under an oppressive dictatorship.
    Let us hope that they are able to achieve that dream of freedom.
    Others in the past have similarly tried to escape socialism, many died on the Berlin wall or endeavoring to cross the Iron Curtain which stretched across Europe from the Baltic to the Black Sea. The Iron Curtain was not there to stop people getting in to the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, but to stop those imprisoned within, from getting out.
    The burden of living in Socialist states is the lot of far too many. There are those who denigrate the freedom and democracy which they are privileged to enjoy, but they fail to exercise their opportunities to move to Socialist States ensuring that the flow of those seeking refuge is one way!
    How many seek refuge in Cuba, in North Korea, in Zimbabwe, in Russia, in China, in Vietnam?

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